William M. Johnston


William (Bill) M. Johnston, 90, of Oriskany, beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, passed away on Sept. 3, 2020. He was born in Fishs Eddy to the late Harvey and Edith Wormuth Johnston. William grew up in the Hancock area and on July 17, 1954, he married the love of his life, Veronica Lakin, in Walton. 

William and Veronica relocated to the Rome area and he made his career at Strandflex Corporation, Oriskany, until his retirement in 1994. After retirement, William and Veronica moved to Melbourne, Fla., and resided there for 16 years until moving back to Sidney, then Oriskany. William will be remembered for his love of horseshoe pitching and the countless hours spent organizing tournaments. He was instrumental with the arranging of the largest horseshoe tournament in New York state history in 1985 in Floyd. William also earned a place in the New York State Horseshoe Pitchers Hall of Fame.

William had a great love for his family. He enjoyed challenging his grandchildren in games, cards, sharing stories and jokes, and spending quality time with them. He embraced his nickname Gramps - Grumpy with pride. 

In addition to his wife Veronica, William is survived by his six children, Steven and Sandy of Florida, Kim Sacra of Georgia, Timothy and Jenny of Georgia, James of Oriskany, William Patrick and Annalisa of Long Island, and Christopher of Oriskany; nine grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, and his sister, Doris Ferrara of Binghamton. 

At William’s request be no formal services will be held. Those wishing may make a donation in his memory to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital at www.stjude.org or to Dementia Society of America at dementiasociety.org


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